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Title: Mastering the master plan at the World Heritage Site of Lumbini (Nepal) : the development of an evidence-based approach to evaluate the site's economic and social impacts on local communities
Author: Lafortune-Bernard, Anouk
ISNI:       0000 0004 8509 4690
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2020
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Evidence gaps are a major challenge for cultural heritage practice and research, especially in a post-UN Agenda 2030 context where interventions and policies increasingly have to demonstrate their contributions to sustainable development. Using Lumbini Birthplace of the Lord Buddha World Heritage Site (Nepal) as a case study, this thesis therefore discusses approaches for bridging the evidence gap to monitor and evaluate more closely the social and economic impacts of heritage sites. The site of Lumbini is an important place of pilgrimage for Buddhist communities worldwide and an important visitor attraction in Nepal, with significant social, economic and religious values for local communities. The modern development of Lumbini guided by an ambitious Master Plan has generated high expectations for local and regional development. However, the evidence for the social and economic impact of the Lumbini Master Plan, and its benefits for local communities and development, remains limited. The aim of this thesis is to document site development and assess the current evidence for its economic and social impacts on local communities. The thesis develops an analytical framework to evaluate impacts of the site development, based on 10 social and economic indicators, and review the existing evidence using a data gap analysis approach. Ultimately, it pilots a methodology to initiate gap-bridging strategies, based on rapid assessment methods. Building on the existing evidence and the primary data collection, the thesis provides a critical review of the recorded impacts of Lumbini development on local communities and the role of heritage management and policies in shaping these impacts. The findings have several policy implications for management and development strategies in Lumbini. Moreover, in a context where the rich cultural heritage of Nepal and Asia is increasingly playing a pivotal role in development interventions, the thesis discusses possible applications of its methodology for evidence-building in South Asian and World Heritage sites management more widely.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available